Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Day 5: Blistering heat, blistering feet....

April 25: I slept well, despite the mouse running through camp during the night. At least the little guy didn't chew through any of my gear or food.

Sunrise in the morning!

I managed to get hiking by 7:00am, my earliest start-time yet! I had planned to start at 7:00am or earlier each day to get as much hiking in before the heat of the afternoon settled in, but it seemed like I always fell a little behind in breaking down camp. At least today, I finally hit my goal.

The weather forecast called for a high of 85 degrees--certainly on the hot side, but I knew it could have been much worse.

The day's hiking was largely uneventful for me. I soon caught up with Evenstar and her blisters continued to be a massive problem for her. Today, they mostly managed to pop on their own just from walking which saved her the effort of popping them herself, but they gave her so much trouble, she couldn't even get one of her feet into a shoe and walked with a Croc on one foot instead for half the day.

Evenstar hiking with one Croc due to the blisters on that foot.

Several times during the day, I managed to lose the trail but quickly realized whenever I veered off track and corrected. I did, however, use the opportunity at one point to dig a hole and poop. It seemed very unlikely that another hiker would catch me in the act when I had actually lost the trail--they would have had to have lost the trail at the same place that I did which seemed unlikely. If I tried to go somewhere near the trail, the chances of being caught on this very exposed terrain would have been much higher. =)

Throughout the day, several hikers passed us, including a second hiker named Sprout. Only my 5th day on the trail, and I've met two Sprouts. They joked that one of them should call themselves Sprout 1 and Sprout 2. Or maybe one could be Brown Sprout and the other Small Sprout to distinguish themselves from each other. (The one had a darker complexion, perhaps with some sort of Latino heritage, but that's just a total guess on my part.)

Another hiker, Sweep, swept past Evenstar and me while we were stopped under a shady tree like we were standing still. In fact, we were sitting still, but even if we were walking, I still think it would have felt like we were standing still. He started the trail only a couple of days earlier, I believe, pulling in 30-mile days for who knows what reason. It didn't sound like fun to me, but he seemed in good spirits.

Initially, my goal had been to camp near the last water cache before Lordsburg, but I later decided to stop before then because it sounded like almost every hiker who passed us was planning to camp near there and it sounded like that area might be a bit crowded tonight.

So Evenstar and I set up camp before then. Evenstar stopped before then because her feet just couldn't carry her any further. I stopped to keep Evenstar company and avoid the crowds at the water cache.

Then we set up camp and watched the sun set. I wrote in my journal and read my Kindle while Evenstar did, well, I'm not sure what she did. She might have just gone to sleep. In any case, we were done for the day!

Perhaps a warning to thru-hikers?

Definitely a warning to thru-hikers. *nodding* You can die out here!

Yum... nasty scum water. =) Today, we had no water caches to enjoy so instead we had to use stuff like this for our water supplies.

Shade! Precious shade!

More nasty cow water....

The best water of the day came from this tank. In the photo is Sprout, Paddles, Guru and... I think Fraggles and Tumbleweed? I'm actually having trouble connecting faces with names since it was so long ago I met these folks and I never really saw them again after today. They were hiking much too fast for me!

Evenstar attends to this blister on the back of her foot during a break.

Don't confuse this photo with the first one on this post. That first one was the sunrise. This is the sunset.


Kurious Jo said...

Losing the trail would be a bit unnerving. How did you figure out which way to go to get back to it?

Also, I'm feelin' sorry for Evenstar.

Ryan said...

I have a GPS which is very useful for the times I lose the trail. =)